Friday, March 30, 2012

An Ounce of Prevention: "What RPS Wishes She Knew as a Single Woman Before Marriage"

1) Discuss, I mean REALLY discuss religion before you walk down the aisle:  If your beliefs are important to you and something you want to share with a future family, know what your partner's beliefs are and make sure they run parallel to yours. What seems like not a big deal can DEFINITELY turn into one, especially when children enter the picture.

2) Before getting married, live on your own if you can afford it. I am so thankful that I lived on my own for almost seven years before I got married because I learned a lot about who I was, how to run a household (paying bills, budgeting, etc.), got to practice cooking (LOL), learned how to create boundaries, and can appreciate having a partner.

3) Know that his family is your family once you get married, so choose accordingly:  Had I known the extent of my new family's, um, interaction, I definitely would have discussed boundaries and waited out our trip down the aisle until significant changes were made rather than trying to deal with them while also navigating our first year of marriage. Although I believe that we are stronger today because of all that we've been through, I don't wish those trials on anyone.

4) What's mine is yours and what yours is mine, FOR REAL:  This is where "For richer or for poorer" comes into play.  If you are in debt when you get married, you both are in debt.  If he has financial obligations, you both have financial obligations.  After almost two years of marriage, I am a big advocate for getting your house in order before getting married if you are able. One less stress to worry about...

5) Know when to hold back and when to let go:  I am still in the process of perfecting this one.  Not every argument is worth getting into. Sometimes it's best to just let it go, especially if it;s not a big issue. Nagging and passive aggressive comments build up and turn into blow ups, so choose your battles as well as choose your tone. I've had to learn to save some of my reactions for a minute or two so that I can harness my initial anger and think and respond reasonably.  Let's be honest, when you're together 24/7, things will make you mad, that's just how it is. You can keep things civil by thinking before you act, admitting and apologizing when you're wrong, and not holding a grudge. ---RPS (30)

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